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How One "Sister Wives" Star Finally Left Her Scandalous Family Behind

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The popular TLC show, Sister Wives follows the lives the polygamist Brown family. Kody Brown is "married" to four women: Robyn, Christine, Janelle and Meri.  

There is one member of the family that isn't like the others: Meri.

Meri has faced heartache, loneliness and has even been involved in an online affair. With emotions ranging from jealousy to feeling as though she is living her life on her own, she is not your typical sister wife.

Ultimately she broke away from the family to pursue things that make her happy.


Meri was actually Kody's first wife, but she legally divorced him so that he could marry his fourth "wife" Robyn. Another reason she did this was so that Kody could legally adopt Robyn's three kids from a previous marriage.

"If ever I'm having an emotional moment about what I've lost, I just think, it's not about me, it's about the kids," Meri said in one episode.

The family's official statement made no mention of the children, though.

"We have chosen to legally restructure our family. We made this decision together as a family. We are grateful to our family, friends and fans for all their love and support."

The decision clearly hurt Meri who said, "It's the end of something that we had had, in a way, for 24 and a half years. But at the same time, I know it's not because I have eternity with him. I have eternity with the family. I know it's not the end."

The family includes a total of 17 children between the four women. Meri and Kody were married for 25 years before their divorce, and have one child together. Kody has been spiritually united to Janelle for 22 years and the couple have six children together. He has also been spiritually united with Christine for 21 years and they also have six children together. Kody has been with Robyn for 5 years and they have two children together, in addition to the three he adopted from her previous marriage. The family also has one grandchild from Kody and Janelle's daughter, Madison.

Looking for love online

In 2015, it came out that Meri had engaged in a relationship online.

"It sounded like a guy with a southern accent. We laughed a lot. It was easy to connect with him, just because there was so much in common…. He was very, very flirty with me. And I have guy friends and I am a little bit flirty too," she said.  

While she thought she was speaking to a man named Sam, she was actually being duped and talking to a woman named Jackie Overton.

The scandal nearly tore the family apart.

"I became fearful of the online relationship as I became aware of the deception. I didn't know how to get out of the situation without putting myself, family, and friends at greater risk. It was a very difficult time. I had a lot of anxiety," she admitted.

But it's the relationships between the various members of the family that has Meri backing away.

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